I think we look good enough going forward to get a couple of goals, and I'm hoping some poor finishing and good goalkeeping might even see us keep a clean sheet!? (prediction 2-0)
The worry is still the defence. However, anyone who saw the replays of the Rangers game would have seen a defence slower on the turn than Dave McPherson in his prime. How many times did we get beaten by balls over the top, and I know it is unfair to criticise young Bobby Donnelly, but he has to play better at Paisley on Saturday. Craigan needs to talk him through the game - the only problem with that being that Craigan needs to put all his concentration into playing well and not making any mistakes - please hurry back Brian McLean!
The only change I would make from last Sunday's game would be to bring in Scott MacDonald in place of Steven McGarry. I know this is unfair on McGarry who played quite well last week, especially as it is against one of his former teams, but I think Skippy and McCormack could work well together as they are both skilful and will take players on. I would drop McCormack further back to play wide. From what I saw on Sunday he has excellent pace and can put a great ball into the box. I also think Ross on one wing, and Ritchie on the other, could bring us a few goals. He may not be the best defensively, but I think everyone will agree the only way we are going to take three points on Saturday is attack attack attack!
The centre of midfield is still a problem and as we have not signed anyone, I am quite willing to predict either O'Donnell or Kerr will get injured on Saturday. This will leave a massive gaping hole in the centre of our team and one that needs to be filled quickly. I have been told that Kilmarnock are still keen to sign Keith Lasley after he gets over an injury, well I say hijack that move and sign him now. Killie are just as skint as us if not more so, so we should be able to match their offer if not better it. We have the wages of Hammell, Leitch and Butcher to play with, all of whom would have been on the top end of the wage scale, so we must be able to offer a half decent contract? (probably not) I read somewhere we are trying to get Paul Lawson from Celtic, don't know much about him but Malpas worked with him in the under 21's so he may be a prospect.
Mike's Team For Saturday:
GK - Graeme Smith (great!)
RB - Paul Quinn (can be good/can be bad)
LB - Jim Paterson (slow but good cover in this position)
CB - Stephen Craigan (needs a strong centre half beside him)
CB - Bobby Donnelly (promising, but still a bit raw)
RM - Ritchie Foran (headbanger but good when he wants to be)
LM - Ross McCormack (from what I have seen looks great, great free kicks!)
CM - Phil O'Donnell (please don't get injured)
CM - Brian Kerr (please don't get injured)
F - Jim Hamilton (sometimes lazy but important)
F - Scott MacDonald (probably thinks he is better than he is - still great for us though!)